ISRO's Mars Orbiter captures image of largest moon of Mars

Phobos, the mysterious moon of Mars is believed to be made up of carbonaceous chondrites. 

Jul 4, 2020 08:05 IST
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ISRO’s Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) has captured the image of ‘Phobos’, the largest and closest moon of Mars. The image was captured by Mars Colour Camera (MCC) aboard Mom on July 1, 2020 when the Mars orbiter was around 7,200 km from Mars and 4,200 km from Phobos.

ISRO said in an official statement that the spatial resolution of the image is 210 m. It is a composite image generated from 6 MCC frames and has been color corrected.

Phobos, the mysterious moon of Mars is believed to be made up of carbonaceous chondrites. 


The image shows the largest crater on Phobos- Stickney crater and other craters -Shklovsky, Roche & Grildrig.

The violent phase that Phobos has encountered is seen in the large section gouged out from a past collision, which is named as the Stickney crater and bouncing ejecta.

Mars Orbiter Mission: Key Objectives

•  India’s first mission to Mars, also known as Mangalyaan, aims to develop the technologies required for design, planning, management and operations of an interplanetary mission. 

•  The key scientific objective of the mission to explore Mars surface features, morphology, mineralogy and Martian atmosphere with the help of indigenous scientific instruments.

•  The MOM mission executed with a budget of Rs 450-crore aims at studying the Martian surface, its mineral composition and scan its atmosphere for methane, which is an indicator of life on Mars.

Mangalyaan Mission- MOM

ISRO’s ambitious Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM), also called "Mangalyaan" as launched on November 5, 2013. The historic mission is India’s first interplanetary mission. The success of the mission made ISRO the fourth space agency to reach Mars after Roscosmos, NASA, and the European Space Agency.

ISRO had succeeded in placing the Mars Orbiter Spacecraft into an orbit around planet Mars on September 24, 2014, making India the first-ever nation to do so in its very first attempt. The mission also made India the first Asian nation to reach the Martian orbit.

The mission was initially meant to last six months, but subsequently, ISRO stated that it had enough fuel for it to last for many years. 

There are five scientific instruments on board ISRO’s Mars Orbiter - Mars Colour Camera (MCC), Thermal Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (TIS), Methane Sensor for Mars (MSM), Lyman Alpha Photometer (LAP) and Mars Exospheric Neutral Composition Analyser (MENCA).


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